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The Complete Roderick Paperback – Bargain Price, January 4, 2005
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"Superb comparable with early Kurt Vonnegut." Time Out --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
About the Author
John Sladek (1937 - 2000)John Sladek was born in Iowa in 1937 but moved to the UK in 1966, where he became involved with the British New Wave movement, centred on Michael Moorcock's groundbreaking New Worlds magazine. Sladek began writing SF with 'The Happy Breed', which appeared in Harlan Ellison's seminal anthology Dangerous Visions in 1967, and is now recognized as one of SF's most brilliant satirists. His novels and short story collections include The Muller Fokker Effect, Roderick and Tik Tok, for which he won a BSFA Award. He returned to the United States in 1986, and died there in March 2000. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
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And then there's some inexplicable twist with the people who raise the robot, as if their personal lives were an issue we were suddenly supposed to care about.
A Disappointing book, all in all. Another SF work I didn't read when I was young enough to overlook the ineptitude of the writing and the disjointed construction of the novel for the enjoyment of the development of the innocent machine.
The second novel, Roderick at Random, has less to offer in the way of interesting ideas, and is neither as funny nor as melancholy. Ultimately, it's more adventures without any real focus - a typical sequel. For those who just can't get enough of Roderick, this should be a decent value. For those who felt that the original novel was a touch overlong to begin with, perhaps the Complete Roderick is unnecessary.
I echo MadDog's sentiment wrt to sadness post-completion. I missed its exhilaration.
What sets this apart is the tone. Sladek has stepped away from the black comedy and created a melancholy epic. This is his middle-age novel. Darker and more personal than most of his other work ("Bugs" being the exception), "Roderick" is about growing up, disillusionment, and self-realisation. It's still funny, but it's hard to tell who you're laughing at.
I've read it twice, and each time I was sorry when it ended.